Sixty-seven per cent of those also admitted to having exceeded their initial budget, echoing the findings of comparative studies in confirming that some romantic couples are willing to increase their budget once they start shopping around, rather than compromise. “This is in stark contrast to other research which shows that overall wedding spend has dropped in the last three years (figures vary but are as high as 25 per cent),” reported Nicholas James.
While economising might be popular for some purchases, the couples interviewed were largely adamant that they wouldn’t be willing to do this for the engagement ring. A tiny seven per cent said they would be willing, and for the remainder, there were a variety of solutions: almost a quarter were willing to extend the engagement period; 19 per cent would use their credit card; and an impressive 37 per cent would economise on living costs.
Nick Fitch, the creative force behind Nicholas James in Hatton Garden, commented: “We commissioned this research to confirm what I suspected – that consumers view the engagement (and wedding rings) as both important lifelong purchases and financial investments. Customers coming to my store are also more educated than ever before about the quality of stones and the importance of metal choice.”